Students check in and takeover Holiday Inn

Travel & Tourism students took over the running of Holiday Inn Brighouse

Students from Bradford College checked in to the Holiday Inn in Brighouse for a week - but it was not a vacation.

Instead, the students, from Travel and Tourism and Catering and Hospitality courses, gained some invaluable work experience by working alongside staff in a variety of roles before taking over the running of the establishment themselves.

It was the second year in a row that the large hotel, just off junction 25 of the M62 motorway, hosted students to give them a real-world work placement that enabled them to put their classroom learning into practice.

The students covered a variety of roles including reception, catering, maintenance, events and management. They shadowed and assisted staff at the start of the week before taking the reins on the final day.

Louisa Yates, who worked on reception, greeting guests, making bookings and taking payments, loved the experience.

"It has been a brilliant experience and I am so pleased I got the opportunity," said Louisa.

"I have gained lots of confidence from taking part and have seen what it is really like to work in a hotel. It is hard work, but enjoyable. I don't have a fixed idea of what career I want but I would definitely consider hotels now."

Anzela Vormanova took on the duties of the hotel general manager. She said: "I am buzzing - I have learned so much.

"I had to learn how the whole hotel works and be there to help fix any problems, step-in and help anywhere if we were short staffed and generally make sure that everything is running smoothly.

"I have picked up new skills and knowledge that will enhance my CV and help my future career prospects."

Simran Kumar, who served customers food and drink in the lounge bar, added: "I really enjoyed interacting with customers and it was great working with the staff and learning new skills."

Budding chef Conner Griffin enjoyed his time in the busy hotel kitchen.

"I found it a challenge but I really enjoyed it," he said.

"I have been tested, but in a good way. I am grateful to the staff for letting me learn from their experience. I want to work in a busy kitchen so there is no better way to see what that is like than spending the week here."

Operations Manager at the hotel, Kate Green, said: "We enjoyed having the students from Bradford College come in and work with us again. It is a project that is valuable to both sides.

"It is beneficial for the students to see what a real workplace is like and what it takes to work in a busy hotel environment. It is beneficial to the hotel too as we get to share our experience and showcase the great career opportunities that exist in our industry to students who are our future workforce.  

"We really enjoy seeing them develop over the week and how their confidence and skills grow."

Sarah O'Connell, a tutor in Travel and Tourism at Bradford College, said: "We are very grateful to Holiday Inn Brighouse for offering our students such a great insight into the industry and the chance to enhance their CVs and boost their employability.

"Work placements are vital. They complement the lessons we deliver in College and give students a taste of the real world as they make important decisions about the career path they want to follow after College.

"At Bradford College, we are determined to give our students the education and experience to help launch them into successful careers and partnerships with employers such as Holiday Inn Brighouse are invaluable."